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Contact: Jeff Axel
Springdale, UT- The National Park Service (NPS) received a letter today from the Executive Director for the Utah Department of Health recommending the full closure of Zion National Park. Upon receiving this request from the state health department, Superintendent Jeff Bradybaugh, with the support of the NPS Deputy Director, Operations, David Vela and Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt, made the decision to immediately close the park until further notice.
"We appreciate the collaboration with state and local agencies and their expertise in steps to reduce the risk of the spread of COVID-19,” said Zion National Park Superintendent Jeff Bradybaugh. “Zion has been carefully assessing our ability to provide a safe environment amid this crisis and in making progressive changes to operations as needed. However, visitors are continuing to come to the park from all across the country at numbers difficult to maintain social distancing.”
State Route 9 (Zion-Mount Carmel Highway and Tunnel) and Kolob Terrace Road, the two roads through Zion National Park will remain open for the safety and needs of local residents only. Stopping at pull offs will be prohibited.
“I’m grateful to the Department of the Interior for recognizing the need to close Zion National Park as quickly as possible,” Governor of Utah Gary Herbert said. “Even with stay home orders and directives in place across the nation, Zion still continues to receive a high number of visitors each day, which greatly increases the risk of infection to communities near the park. We look forward to the day that this pandemic draws to a close and we can once again welcome the world to Utah’s public lands.”
The health and safety of park visitors, employees, local residents, volunteers, and partners in and around Zion National Park is the Service's number one priority. The NPS has consistently assessed its park units and made modifications to its operations in accordance with CDC, state and local public health guidance. The NPS will continue to follow the guidance of public health officials in making operational decisions in response to this pandemic.
Last updated: May 3, 2020